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Lockout/ Tagout Program

Energy source that has been locked & tagged out for setup, service or repair - Source: California Dept of Industrial Relations

Learn about UC San Diego's Lockout/Tagout Program to safeguard employees from the unexpected energization of machinery and equipment.

UC San Diego has a Lockout/ Tagout (LOTO) Program in place to provide close oversight of cleaning, repairing, servicing, setting-up, and adjusting of machines and equipment in which the unexpected energization or start-up of the machines or equipment or release of stored energy could cause injury to employees.

LOTO procedures apply to the following forms of energy:

  • Chemical
  • Electrical
  • Gravity
  • Hydraulic
  • Natural gas
  • Pneumatic
  • Positional
  • Springs
  • Steam
  • Stored energy
  • Thermal (heat)
  • Other

Affected employees and facilities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Building services
  • Carpentry shops
  • Engineering
  • Housing-Dining-Hospitality facilities
  • Groundskeeping
  • Machine shops
  • Maintenance and utilities
  • Research buildings
  • Vivaria


Requirements for UC San Diego departments

Departments that service or maintain machinery or equipment that is capable of inadvertent movement or release of stored energy must implement the LOTO requirements below:

1. Develop a written Energy Control Plan (ECP)

Develop written machine-specific lockout/tag out Energy Control Plans (ECP). If written plans have not been developed, blueprints or as-built drawings must be available to identify sources of energy and sufficient lockout/ tag out control points.

2. Conduct a workplace assessment

Conduct an annual workplace assessment to identify and correct LOTO deficiencies. Assessments will be lead by the supervisor, department head, or manager. Ask an EH&S General Safety specialist to participate if you need assistance.

Authorized employees

During the assessment, plans will be reviewed by authorized employees*. Authorized employees will assist in the identification of deficiencies and the development of solutions.

* An authorized employee is a person who turns off and disconnects the machinery or equipment from its energy source before performing service or maintenance. The authorized employee locks out, blocks out, and/ or tags the energy isolating device to prevent the release of hazardous energy.

Record-keeping requirements

Documentation must include the date of assessment, machine or equipment evaluated, people involved, and corrective action taken.

These records will be kept for at least 5 years in the department office.

Training for UC San Diego employees

Requirements for Contractors

Contractors working at UC San Diego must:

  • Have and follow a written LOTO Program in place that is as stringent as the UC San Diego LOTO Program
  • Coordinate all LOTO activities with the UC San Diego project manager
  • Submit upon project completion within the timeframe and specifications established by the hiring department:
    • Blueprints
    • Schematics
    • LOTO procedures
    • Other required data 



  • Affected employee is an employee whose job requires them to operate or use a machine or equipment on which cleaning, repairing, servicing, setting-up, or adjusting operations are being performed under lockout or tagout, or whose job requires the employee to work in an area in which such activities are being performed under lockout or tagout.
  • Authorized employee is a person who turns off and disconnects the machinery or equipment from its energy source before performing service or maintenance.
  • Lockout is the use of devices, positive methods, and procedures which will result in the effective isolation or securing of prime movers, machinery, and equipment from mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, electrical, thermal, or other hazardous energy sources.
  • Prime mover is the source of mechanical power for a machine.

Policies and regulations

For more information, contact EH&S General Safety, (858) 534-7513.